Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The Summer of Crud by Jonathan LaPoma Review

The Summer of Crud
By Jonathan LaPoma


I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I am leaving this review voluntarily, all thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

During the last summer before starting his teaching job, 22 year-old Danny Wolinski takes a cross-country road trip with his friend Ian Perez in hopes of finding the inspiration that will take his songwriting to the next level. As they travel from place to place we see them party and get high almost constantly while Danny deals with abuse, mental illness and physical pain.

This book was hard to review, because while so little actually happened, it said so much. Ian is verbally and mentally abusive to Danny. He makes fun of him and puts him down both alone and in front of people. Danny allows this behavior to continue because he feels special that Ian has chosen him for this role. It is in this way of thinking that we see signs of Danny's mental illness.

The Darkness was addicting. There was ecstasy in depression. Honor in anxiety. I knew I was a sacrifice. And I knew so few others could handle such a role.”

This passage from the book speaks volumes to the way abuse victims see their abusers. This passage itself, shines a bold light on the inside of a troubled mind.

The ending is abrupt, but it works. Nothing gets wrapped up in a pretty bow. It just ends, as sometimes things just do.

I don't recommend this book for the faint of heart. This book is raw and written bluntly. Nothing in this book has it's edges sanded down or rounded off. The topics of mental health, addiction, abuse and physical pain are not made over into something less terrible than they are. That is one thing I can appreciate about this book. If you are into blunt material that doesn't always receive the storybook happy ending then this book is probably for you.

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